Driving Holidays Croatia

by Admin on April 9, 2014

croatiaWith stunning coastal roads that wind through medieval harbours overlooking countless islets, Croatia is the perfect destination for driving holidays. It’s easiest to fly and hire a car, although some people do drive, depending on where they live. First you’ll need to decide where to start your holiday. You could fly to the capital, Zagreb, where you can soak up the culture from a café terrace, explore the historic Upper Town or peruse Dolac Market before embarking on your journey. Alternatively, you could begin your trip in Italy, visiting Venice before driving the coastal road towards Pula, Rijeka and beyond.

 

Exploring the Dalmatian Coast

Whether you commence your road-trip in Zagreb or Venice, head for the coast and make your first stop the Plitvice Lakes National Park. Allow plenty of time to explore the park and its beautiful natural wonders – lush forests, waterfalls and spectacular interconnecting lakes. Next, make your way to the three thousand-year-old harbour city, Zadar, where you can wander through fascinating medieval streets and see Roman ruins and quaint old churches.

Spend at least a night in Zadar so you can experience a sunset at the ‘Greeting to the Sun’ installation, which is a large circular ‘sun’ made of solar cells covered with glass that creates intriguing coloured light effects. This can be found at the promenade on the Riva waterfront where you will also be able to hear the ‘Sea Organ’.

 

Unwinding with nature

Continue south and spend some time relaxing at the Krka National Park. Situated on the Krka River, the park is best known for its cascading waterfalls, clear pools and numerous historic sites and there are restaurants, picnic areas, boat excursions and sightseeing tours available if required. Afterwards, drive the short distance to Šibenik, a charming coastal city that is home to the ‘Terraneo’ music festival that has previously featured artists including The Prodigy and Wu Tang Clan.

 

Last ports of call

The next stop is Split, Croatia’s second-largest city, where you can explore the ancient Diocletian’s Palace – so extensive it’s almost a city itself – which houses shops, bars and restaurants within its marble walkways. This magnificent city is another great place to spend a night or two before heading back to Zagreb or Venice or continuing on to one final destination, the island of Korcula, where it is rumoured that Marco Polo was born. The island has a sandy beach and a marina around which bars, restaurants and cafés are situated, and from where you can soak up the intoxicating atmosphere of Korcula Town.

 

What to expect

Driving conditions are good in Croatia but there may be limited opportunities for overtaking on the coastal road so you should be prepared for a leisurely pace. When arranging your holiday don’t forget to book car hire excess insurance to cover you against any mishaps. For the return part of the journey or for those who prefer a faster pace there is a motorway, but you will miss out on the fantastic scenery that the coastal road provides. Croatia’s Dalmatian Coast is a spectacular destination for driving holidays and you won’t be disappointed with its plentiful attractions and lush topography combined with the warm hospitality of its people.

photo by: eGuide Travel

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There are obviously various components that make up a car, and as dramatic as this sounds, there are certain things that are fitted to a car which can literally mean the difference between life and death when you are driving on the road.

ripped-tyreBrakes enable you to stop your car as efficiently and quickly as possible, and it is imperative that these safety components are always in excellent working order. You can usually tell if your brakes aren’t in tip-top shape, usually because you will notice that it takes you longer to stop your car, and also because it might cause your car to fail its MOT test!

Another important safety aspect of cars are their tyres. Available in all sorts of different sizes and styles, these are an equally-crucial component that help us to drive in all sorts of different ground and weather conditions as safely and comfortably as possible.

The trouble is, many people don’t check the condition of their tyres, and this can subsequently result in disastrous consequences if they are still left unchecked for a long period of time. Here is what you need to know on tyre safety and maintenance, so that you can continue to have safe journeys on the road with your car.

Tyre tread depth

In the United Kingdom and the rest of the European Union, the minimum legal tyre tread depth is 1.6mm. All new tyres come with a tread depth of 8mm, but I would recommend that you do not leave your tyres to reach the minimum tread depth before replacing them.

Not only does your car have less traction on the road with lower tyre tread depths, especially during adverse weather conditions, but they are more likely to suffer from blowouts and punctures.

Tilsun Group states that you should also be aware that if you drive a car with tyres under the legal tread depths and you get pulled over by the police, you could get three penalty points per dodgy tyre; if all of them were illegal, you can kiss goodbye to your driving licence!

Wheel alignment

Sometimes known as “tracking”, all cars need to have their drive wheels (i.e. their front wheels) correctly aligned in order to prevent premature wear of the tyres on those wheels, and to stop any extra stress being placed on other steering and suspension components due to misaligned wheels dragging.

You can normally tell if your wheels are correctly aligned by momentarily letting go of your steering wheel whilst driving on a completely flat piece of ground (only when it is safe to do so); if the car still keeps on going straight, then all is well, but if the car wanders towards the left or the right then chances are your front wheels need realigning.

Balancing

If your tyres are not correctly balanced, you may notice that your steering wheel vibrates at a particular speed range (usually between 50 mph to 70 mph). Tyre fitters balance your wheels by fitting metal weights onto the side or inside of your wheels, and the balancing is checked using state-of-the-art computer equipment.

Tyre pressures

As part of your weekly car maintenance checks, you should ensure that your tyres are pumped up to the correct pressures (usually measured in PSI or bar). If you notice that one of more of your tyres keeps losing pressure regularly, this may indicate that they have a puncture, which will need to be rectified as soon as possible by your local tyre fitter.

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